This was dedicated to the mother of Eels' mainman Mark Everett, who died from lung cancer in 1998. Everett explained to the Sun newspaper January 10, 2008 why this song is "tinged with sadness": "Well, s--t happens. Life is happy and sad and all the shades of grey in between. I just try to reflect all that stuff as best I can. My mother was an avid birdwatcher. She had a lot of bird books and feeders that I brought with me from her house. I set up the feeders in my yard and I read the books. 'I Like Birds' was a way of staying connected to her."
Elizabeth from West Bridgewater, MaThis song seems to be about exactly what Mark said: "s--t happens, so you have to deal with the inconveniences in life." The person in the song doesn't seem to care about being too entertained w/things like a rocket launch, being wealthy with an "autocar", or getting frustrated with rude and asshole people in his life(the mean little people at the store) because he has that one thing he needs to be happy and deal with things: birds.